Catherine Ann Stevens Crowe (1790-1872) was born in London but spent most of her childhood at Borough Green in Kent. Little is known of her early life until she married Lt Col John Crowe. She was an early advocate of women's educational rights, including ladies such as Harriet Martineau among her correspondents. Her other associates reflect Edinburgh and London society in the mid nineteenth century and include Hans Christian Andersen, the artist Jane Loudon, the publisher T. Fields and his wife Annie Adams and many more authors, artists and photographers.
She was also deeply interested in the supernatural, in particular spiritualism and the occult. She is mentioned as a prominent spiritualist in the 1871 Yearbook of Spiritualism. Mrs Crowe wrote a series of novels and articles relating to the supernatural and in 1848 published The night side of nature. This book includes topics such as mesmerism, parapsychology, poltergeists and phrenology and went through three editions in five years. Mrs Crowe described herself as the 'disciple' of George Combe, a prominent phrenologist.
In 1859 Mrs Crowe suffered some form of mental breakdown. This event was well documented by, among others, Charles Dickens. After her illness she wrote very little.